The fashion label feted its new store with dancing and equestrian flair
Words by DIANE DORRANS SAEKS
On Thursday, Nov. 14, more than 300 superfans bedecked in custom Birkins and expertly knotted Hermès scarves marveled at the brand’s handsome new 9,000-square-foot Grant Avenue flagship, recently unveiled by brilliant Parisian architecture agency RDAI in downtown San Francisco.
Friends of the brand, such as Yurie and Carl Pascarella, and Brunno and Urania Ristow, made their way to the dynamically reinvented space, complete with views of Maiden Lane and Geary Street. Attendees admired the dramatic solid oak staircase that leads to an expansive second floor, where fine jewelry and home decor are showcased. “I planned to check out the tie collection, but these new interiors are marvelous,” said Brunno, circling back to the exquisite jewel box fragrance department.
Denise Hale and Jennifer Smith chatted with Jony Ive and Apple COO Jeff Williams. “I admire the Hermès approach to quiet, understated luxury and refined design,” said Hale, casting her eye over a table set with St. Louis crystal. “The store design is subtle and the merchandise looks marvelous.”
Others explored the new shoe department, checking out the unique colorways of the Hermès Apple Watch bands, including Danielle Steel, Barbara Brown, Carolyn Chang, Allison Speer and Pamela Babey.
Hermès had one more big surprise for the evening: a change in party location. Guests moved to the Mission District, where the fashion label had erected a lavish outdoor party tent — featuring an equestrian ring — in a cavernous former armory. The Alexis de Betak-produced extravaganza included: a performance by Switzerland-based horse whisperer Judy Zagury with her Lusitanian horse, Corazon; a Gold Rush-themed ballet; and later, music by a rollicking brass band.
As Kathryn Lasater and Lindsay Bolton nibbled on dim sum, Charles de Lisle watched the hallucinatory electronic projections of a space-odyssey-esque love letter to San Francisco’s hippie days that had everyone singing along to Bob Dylan classics. By the night’s end, no one could deny Hermès had created magic yet again — and many enthralled guests were already planning return visits to the boutique the next day to admire and discover the fashion label anew.
Feature image: JUDITH ZAGURY of SHANJU gave a special performance involving a horse. All event photos by Drew Altizer.
Nov. 18, 2019
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